Every time we visit Walt Disney World Resort, we usually realize something that we could have done differently. Sometimes it is little things, like remembering to pack sunscreen. Other times there are bigger things that could have made our daily adventures a little better! So here is our top 5!
Top 5 Don’t Dos for Disney
- NEVER UNDER ESTIMATE THE HEAT
Now we are from South Carolina, where we have lots of heat and humidity. So we are pretty much acclimated to the sweltering goodness of the Florida tropical climate. However, the Florida heat is totally different from the South Carolina heat when you add pavement, lots and lots of people, and standing in lines! On a recent trip to check out the new Disney Springs, the heat caught up to us! We were there for Spring Break, so it was crowded everywhere even in the stores and shops and on the walkways. People everywhere. We made plans to eat at the Boathouse for lunch, walk around, shop, take in the sites and then end the day at Splitsville. About 5 in the afternoon, that was it. We were done. We completely under estimated how the heat effected our stamina and energy level. So like all good Disney fanatics, we changed direction of our plans that included a little bit of AC!
- NEVER OVER PACK YOUR PARK BAG
As a Mom and the Chief Sherpa of anything and everything we may need in the park, I tend to over pack my park bag. I start off simple…hand sanitizer, sunglasses, lip balm, sunscreen…you get the picture. Then somewhere in my brain things really go haywire. The next thing I know, there are extra socks and underwear for everyone in the family, a full meal in snacks, 10 bottles of water. Not to mention 3 or4 extra lenses that won’t fit in my husbands camera bag! Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. Just stop. DON’T DO THIS!! You will end up with a back ache at the end of the day and at some point you may even consider abandoning the bag mid-park, rationalizing that you can just buy anything that may have been lost in the amendment! Take only the essentials. You can always go back to your room if you need to!
- NEVER FORGET TO CHARGE YOUR PHONE
As much as I don’t want to include this item, our phones are part of our lives now and Disney has made us even more dependent on them with the My Disney Experience app. No matter how much you want to just collapse in your bed when you return to your room each night, make sure to plug in and charge up!! While you are in the parks, be prepared. Your phone will die! Between using it to check the app, taking pictures, and posting to social media, the battery life will not last long! There are now charging stations in all the parks. But if you don’t want to take time out of your day to find a station, you can always buy an inexpensive external battery to carry with you. We have used one of these before and it works great! Buy a small one so you can cram it in the over full bag – see above!
- NEVER GO TO THE PARK WITHOUT A PLAN IF YOUR PARTY IS SPLIT UP
Even though we have the aforementioned phones when we head to the park, it is always a good idea to have a plan in place if you or someone in your party becomes separated from the group. After you get through the entrance, designate a place in the park for everyone to meet if s separation does occur. For example, in Magic Kingdom, meet at the partner’s statue. It is always good to have a back up plan in case cell phones are not working! Here is my embarrassing story. On a trip not too long ago, we were standing in the newly redeveloped area around the partners statue, in front of Cinderella’s Castle, waiting for the fireworks to begin. Crazy crowded at this point. Somehow, I got separated from my husband and daughter and didn’t realize it. They were calling me but I couldn’t hear my phone. Then I realized I couldn’t see them anymore. I had a few minutes of slight panic. After about 10 minutes, we found each other again. My daughter was on the verge of a meltdown and I have to admit I was close behind her. Even adults can get separated, not just the kids. Have a plan!!
- NEVER UNDER ESTIMATE THE COLD
I know…I started with the heat and now I am talking about the cold. Does it get cold in Florida? Heck yeah it does. We traveled down in December one year. We were packed for mild days and chilly nights. Just so happened, that it was colder than we anticipated. Our Southern blood is prepared for the heat, but not so much for cold weather. You may not need your winter parkas, but you will need gloves and maybe a hat. We were bundled up pretty good and just couldn’t hang. I don’t think we saw a single fireworks show that trip. So just be prepared if you travel during the winter months. Toss a couple of items in the suitcase for colder than chilly weather and you should be fine!